Lil Jon, Tituss Burgess to replace Chris Harrison on ‘Bachelor in Paradise’
The change comes after it was announced on Tuesday that Harrison, the long-time host, is leaving 'The Bachelor' franchise which includes 'Bachelor in Paradise'
It looks like Lil Jon and Tituss Burgess have a new gig.
The Grammy award winning artist and the Emmy nominated actor have signed on to host Bachelor in Paradise this summer, replacing the show’s long time host Chris Harrison, per Variety.
The Bachelor spinoff will take place in Mexico this season and will rotate celebrity hosts until a permanent selection is made. Lil Jon is a familiar face on the franchise as he was featured on Season 14 of The Bachelorette. Burgess is a Broadway star and comedian. He is best known for his role on the Netflix series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt as Titus Andromedon.
The change comes after it was announced on Tuesday that Harrison, the long-time host, is leaving The Bachelor franchise which includes Bachelor in Paradise. As previously reported by theGrio, he was linked to making insensitive comments about race.
Harrison said in an Instagram post that he had a “truly incredible run” helming The Bachelor and is ready for a new chapter. After hosting the franchise show for almost two decades, he stepped to the side after he was accused of racism stemming from his defense of The Bachelor winner Rachel Kirkconnell. Harrison eventually apologized, promising to do better.
Kirkconnell won the 25th season of the show, in which Matt James was the first Black bachelor seeking love. The couple called off their relationship after pictures of Kirkconnell attending an “Old South” antebellum plantation-themed party in 2018 were leaked. There were also reports that the now 24-year-old had also liked social media posts featuring a Confederate flag.
“I’ve had a truly incredible run as host of The Bachelor franchise and now I’m excited to start a new chapter. I’m so grateful to Bachelor Nation for all of the memories we’ve made together. While my two-decade journey is wrapping up, the friendships I’ve made will last a lifetime,” wrote Harrison to Instagram about his departure.
Celebrities like David Spade and Lance Bass have also signed on to host the popular show which first launched in 2014. The competition series features previous contestants of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette as they jet off to a secluded location in paradise.
Despite the backlash Harrison received for making the comments, Rachel Lindsay –the show’s first Black Bachelorette –said she did not see his exit coming.
“I think several past contestants coming forward and saying they didn’t want him to be part of Paradise. I think Katie Thurston, her very last tweet before she went to film her season was that Chris needed to step away. I think that, coupled with the interview that happened on this very stage, maybe led to him not coming back,” said Lindsay, according to PEOPLE.
Lindsay is known for speaking out about the franchise’s struggle with inclusivity and race.
“Well, it’s been 19 years, and if you do watch the show, we saw less and less of Chris. Nineteen years is a big accomplishment,” Lindsay told Extra’s Billy Bush of Harrison’s hosting stint. “Maybe that’s the case. We don’t know. Maybe they were ready to move on.”
Additional reporting by Chinekwu Osakwe
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